Monday, March 24, 2014

Mark This Book Monday: Zenn Scarlett by Christian Schoon!

As the final entry for this week's Mark This Book Monday I have a review for the first book of a science fiction series published by Strange Chemistry about a girl from Mars who is an exoveterinarian. I got the next book on NetGalley for review, so I had to read this one first!

Zenn ScarlettZenn Scarlett by Christian Schoon

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I requested the sequel for Zenn Scarlett via NetGalley without realizing it was a sequel, so once I did I got myself this one to read first, as one should (and thankfully I did, cause book 2 starts right where book 1 finished!).

Zenn Scarlett is the name of our main character, a young girl that wants to become an exoveterinarian and it's training for it with her uncle. In Mars. In a Ciscan cloister.

The moment I saw Mars and Ciscan cloister I was quite impressed! We're mixing one of the oldest religious orders with care for alien animals in Mars as a human colony! Now that was a mix I wasn't expecting at all!

Zenn is helping her uncle and at the same time studying to pass her level exams and continue her education as an exovet, which has always been her dream and life goal. Despite some traumatic events in her past, she's decided to work taking care of the animals.

The plot seems to be quite simple at first, we follow Zenn around the cloister, caring for the animals and having a few strange happenings here and there. We learn that living has been getting harder and harder for the colonists in Mars as of late and that the cloister isn't making people happy with the alien animals and the area that could be used for growing crops. It progresses with the mystery of who might be trying to conspire against the cloister as well we keep on getting some clues here and there about something much bigger going on out there.

The pacing might have been a bit slow on occasion, but I didn't mind as much cause I loved all the animal care and exoveterinary bits that were there. Despite the book being quite entertaning in itself, it sort of felt more like an introduction and a set up than a full book in itself, if that makes enough sense.

Zenn was an interesting character, very focused on caring for the animals and her future career, with some typical teenage reactions here and here, but nothing that seemed out of character for her. She had quite a bit of growing up to do in this book, and I'm hoping quite a bit more in the next!

Given the hints peppered over the book and the way it ended, I have high hopes for a more epic second book (not sure if this one is a duology or a trilogy yet) since this one felt more like an introduction. 3 to 3.5 stars.

View all my reviews


  1. The exoveterinary aspect is what I'm most looking forward to in this series as well Pili! It sounds fascinating and hugely imaginative, and I can't wait to see what kind of animals/creatures she cares for. I'm glad you enjoyed this one overall even if it was slow at times, and I hope book 2 is everything you want it to be! Looking forward to your thoughts on it:)

    1. The parts where Zenn was taking care of the animals and all the descriptions that had to do with the exoveterinary aspect were my favourite bits in the book, they were done very well!
      I'll have the review for book 2 up on Friday, btw!
      Thanks Jenny!

  2. Replies
    1. It's also very interestingly done, and the relationships between humans and aliens and colonists!

  3. I love how animal-y this is! :) I was actually reading this review and thinknig abotu hw I wish more authors started a book slowly with a GOOD intro to the daily lives and characters before going head first into the action you know. Like look at THG it took about what? Half the book? Before they actually left the district. And to me that was perfect and had us actually caring about them before they went into life or death situation. Anyways. This one sounds like it was overall less intense than that but still - I don't mind slower pacing so much :) Yes I took all that time to get that across baha.

    1. I don't mind the slow building where we get to know the characters and what they might leave behind at all either, and actually the parts where Zenn was caring for the animals or learning about them were my fave parts!

  4. Woah, animal veterinarian on Mars! I can sincerely say I've never heard that before! That sounds really interesting, thanks for featuring Pili!

    1. Thanks Jeann! I love sci-fi and it sounded so unique to me that I had to read it!

  5. The pacing WAS disappointigly slow at times, but the worldbuilding and all those animals kept things interesting, so I didn't mind so much.
    The story was different, at least, although it certainly had its issues.
    Great review!

    1. Agreed, the pacing was pretty slow, but the animals were awesome.
      And the sequel is much better too, Maja! I hope you'll check it soon!


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